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Several teams around the NFL might say they’re in sole possession of the league’s premier quarterback.
The Cardinals probably wouldn’t make that claim publicly yet could feel that Kyler Murray has the potential to become the best signal-caller in football.
According to one Cards legend, no QB has more natural talent than Murray right now.
“There’s nobody in the game as talented, and that has as diverse an array of ability as Kyler Murray,” Cardinals all-time receiving leader Larry Fitzgerald said this week on NFL Network. “He’s for sure [the long-term guy for the Cardinals.]
“He’s immensely talented in terms of his athleticism, and with his ability to trow the ball going left or right. He’s a guy that everybody around the league has to prepare differently for.
Fitz likes Murray’s supporting cast, too. He praised the addition of Marquise Brown, and expects more good things from tight end Zach Ertz and running back James Conner.
“I really like where they’re positioned,” Fitzgerald said. “Obviously the schedule is really tough early on in the season, they’re going to be without [DeAndre] Hopkins, but I know Kyler has the ability and the fortitude to be able to lift this team up.”
Arizona will certainly have its work cut out for it without Hop, who will open the season at home in service of his six-game suspension for a violation of the league’s anti-drug policy. Hopkins led the squad in receiving TDs while suiting up for just 10 games in 2021. In his absence, much of the onus will fall on Murray to inject the Cards with a needed boost.
He was stellar in the first half of last season, propelling AZ to a fiery 7-0 start, while garnering early MVP consideration. But as the Cardinals have done in recent seasons, they fizzled to close out the year, dropping four of their last five contests, and ultimately meeting their demise in a playoff collapse to the Rams.
This season, Murray is playing for more than wins. He’s eligible for an extension as he enters the final year of his rookie contract. And though the Cards have already guaranteed his return in 2023 by exercising his fifth-year option, Murray’s pushing to be rewarded like a franchise cornerstone.
Which means this season, every snap – and every dollar – counts like it never has before. Can Murray make good on Fitzgerald’s high praise?
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